Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Retreat!

Here are some pictures of our "camp out" with the church family on the 24th and 25th.
It was truly a very good time, and even though Daddy got really sick the first day, we were able to see God's hand work everything out according to His will!

Dad took the truck and some of the men out there early in the morning. Mom and the ladies followed in the van in the afternoon. We had a total of 28 people with a few being unsaved neighbors and friends.

In the late afternoon, Dad became very sick. He was having strong, sharp pains in the lower stomach area. He had already been to the little clinic in town and they had given him some injections, but nothing seemed to help. Everyone gathered together and we prayed and he seemed to get better. He even sat outside and watched a couple games of volley-ball before it was dark.

Some time later he began to feel the severe pains and nausea again, so a young man from church drove him and Mom to a hospital in Cuiaba. Meanwhile, we had supper and held a service and after a while everyone headed off to bed(or rather, to the hammocks and mattresses:-). They arrived back shortly after midnight and Dad had improved much. The exams showed that it was an intestinal inflammation and he began to take the proper medication and (supposedly) be on rest for a week. We were so thankful that it was nothing more serious and that he did not have to stay longer in the hospital; and even though it gave all of us quite a big scare, the next morning everyone was in high spirits, happy to see Pastor back!

We knew we would need lots of wood for the day, so we decided to make it fun for everyone and had a wood chopping competition!

The guys picked their wood...


(This one added special effects to his!)

The ladies (and Dad) stood by to cheer and laugh.

We then had a lovely breakfast with lots of fruits, breads, cakes and cookies.

Sipping coffee...

Lunch was the traditional churrasco...yum!

Alex making sure that nothing burns...

In the afternoon we all relaxed, talked and played some more.

Thaina, Jenifer and Isabelly. (It was also little Isabelly's first birthday!)

The service at night was wonderful. We felt God's presence so closely out there away from all distractions and in fellowship with one another. Lots of people shared testimonies and 'counted blessings', and even our unsaved neighbor, Senhor Ademir, stood to speak and said he, and his wife were thankful to be there where he felt amongst family. Please pray that he may soon come to know the Lord as his Savior, too.

We topped the night off with a hot dog roast and returned home.

We all praised God over and over for restoring Dad's health for the next day, and for the place He has provided for our encouragement and refreshment. Make plans to join us next time, wontcha? :-)


Rebekah said...

How fun! I sure do wish I had been there... 1 month 2 weeks 5 days left!
The only thing is, you didn't say who won the wood chopping contest. :-)
Tell Isabelly "Feliz Anniversario"

The Duarte Family said...

Oh! Well the winner was Giovanni, but the other guys complained that he just happened to get the "easy wood":-) Some pieces are really harder than others so I dont know... plus, you can't really compare Gio's size with Jed's, Rafa's and Alex - he is kinda big! It was really just for fun. The prize was another piece of wood to chop:)

I love you girl!